Top 5 Mistakes When You Start Travel in 2023


From expanding your circle to experiencing new cultures and cuisines, there are many reasons why you should take more trips in 2021. Although you can rectify some travel mistakes, other mistakes can ruin your trip and leave you longing for home. Here are common travel mistakes and how to avoid them.

  1. Overpacking

Heavy luggage is one of the expensive travel mistakes to avoid. For starters, luggage invites airline bag fees. Since the bag is heavy, you must pay for a taxi even if your hotel is near the airport. Not forgetting bellhop tips for carrying your luggage. Another cost is luggage lockers. Assuming your flight is several hours after checkout, you need someone to store your luggage as you explore the area.

But these mistakes don’t just cost you money; overpacking also steals your vacation time. You board and exit taxis faster when you move light. Moreover, you don’t waste time looking for an outfit since you have all your clothes in sight.

Heavy luggage is also tiring, especially when visiting buildings without elevators. You can prevent these travel planning mistakes by choosing backpacks over roller bags. Their small size offers mobility, seeing you can jump over puddles, ride in taxis, and run to trains without worrying about your backpack’s weight. They also fit under airplane seats, eliminating storage costs.

That’s not the case for suitcases that are tedious to move around crowded cities and narrow paths. Worse still, cobblestone could damage your suitcase wheels. You can also maximize space by rolling your clothes instead of making mistakes like folding them.

Another way to evade these mistakes is by slashing your luggage by half. Chances are you won’t wear all the clothes you pack. Furthermore, you can do laundry during your trip when you run out of outfits. Alternatively, carry anti-stink garments that you can wear severally without worrying about odor. You could also wear bulky clothes like boots and jackets to reduce your load.

Again, coordinate with your travel buddy to avoid carrying the same items. For example, you can ask your travel companion to bring a tissue while you pack sunscreen. You could also prevent these travel mistakes by buying toiletries at your destination if the hotel doesn’t provide them.

  1. Not Informing Your Bank

Booking flights, creating itineraries, packing clothes; you name it, it’s easy to leave your bank out of your travel plans with all the activities before your trip. But failing to inform your bank of your journey is one of the worst travel mistakes. Instead of recognizing it as a mistake, your bank may freeze your card if they notice transactions in a new location.

By sharing your travel plans, the bank exempts your account from their fraud detection mechanisms, so you can spend without blocking your card.

The bank may require you to provide your name, account and card numbers, destination, travel duration, and phone number to prevent these travel mistakes. Though you can go to the branch and make the travel notification by contacting customer service or filling an online form. You could also use this opportunity to ask about your bank’s overseas ATM partnerships to save transaction fees.

Other travel mistakes include carrying one card. Having several credit and debit cards ensures you don’t get stranded in the event of theft or loss. While at it, take photos of your credit cards and send them to the cloud or email them to yourself and friends. That way, you have enough details to report their loss to your bank. What’s more, apply for feeless cards.

Transaction fees may appear low, but using the card several times during your vacation is one of the costliest travel mistakes.

This goes together with travel mistakes like overlooking your budget.  Apart from checking your spending, budgeting provides the confidence of affording whatever you want. Don’t forget to carry extra cash to cover emergencies.

Cash payments also minimize identity theft when dealing with dishonest businesses. For the best exchange rates, change currencies at your local bank or airport ATMs. Not mentioning travel mistakes like carrying all your cards when you go out. Leave some money and credit cards in your hotel to avoid losing everything.

  1. Late Bookings

Late bookings are some of the mistakes tourist make. The downside of these online travel mistakes is missing your vacation. Early bookings save you money since you enjoy discounts and vouchers. You also have time to save for the holiday. Again, you can research attractions in your destination and find someone to care for your pets and children when you’re away.

You also avoid travel mistakes by reading customer reviews about a hotel or airline. Likewise, you get the best flight seats and hotel rooms.

Early bookings also allow hotels to grant special requests, for example, allocating a room with an ocean view. This is in addition to building anticipation so that you can share your travel plans with friends and family. Because you have advance tickets, you avoid long lines when visiting an attraction. Moreover, it’s easier to get work leave if you request it in advance than on short notice.

Early bookings also offer ample time to change your destination and rectify your travel mistakes. Most travel companies allow you to postpone or cancel your booking, provided you do it before the trip dates.

Best of all, early bookings eliminate travel mistakes and offer peace of mind. You don’t want to start your vacation going from one hotel to another looking for a room. But what if travel agency errors force you to book late?

Even if you book last minute, you can pay lower fares by choosing red-eye or early morning flights. You can also rectify these travel mistakes by choosing weekday trips over popular weekend flights. Another way to fix these travel mistakes is traveling on holidays instead of several days before. Alternatively, evade the travel mistakes by visiting a cheaper location or renting a car instead of flying.

  1. Exposing Your Valuables

Travel bliss could lower your guard, but exposing your valuables are some of the travel mistakes not to make. One of the tips for traveling safely is doing your research beforehand. That way, you know pickpocket spots and tactics in your travel destination to avoid getting robbed.

For example, thieves may offer you drugged beverages or pose as beggars hoping you make travel mistakes. Another way to prevent these travel mistakes is staying alert in queues and public transport.

Besides zipping your bags, you can shun these travel mistakes by staying awake and minimizing distractions from your phone.

Because it makes you an easy target, drinking too much is one of the solo travel mistakes to avoid. It’s also one of the budget travel mistakes to shun since drinking is expensive. Even if you’re with other people, you won’t notice someone grabbing your valuables when intoxicated.

Another way to avoid these travel mistakes is leaving some belongings in a locker at your accommodation. Don’t forget to bring combination locks to prevent the inconvenience of losing your keys.

That goes hand in hand with cable locks to fasten your possessions to tables or poles in restaurants. But don’t make the travel mistakes of keeping everything together. This way, you still have some valuables in the event of theft.

Although it tells everyone you’re a tourist, putting backpacks in front makes it difficult for thieves to access them. Other travel mistakes to avoid is being careless at ATMs. To protect your PIN, ensure nobody is too close behind. This is in addition to withdrawing cash from a bank instead of street ATMs.

Your bag’s condition also matters when preventing these mistakes. Mend holes and repair broken zippers to avoid dropping your belongings. Additionally, invest in pocket clips, belt wallets, and pickpocket-proof pants, skirts, and shirts to evade these travel mistakes.

Most importantly, don’t flash around your possessions. Unless you’re taking pictures, keep your camera in the bag. You should also steer clear of common travel mistakes like traveling with expensive jewelry at night.

  1. Ignoring Travel Insurance

Vacationing without insurance is one of the most common travel mistakes. For starters, the policy covers medical emergencies below a particular limit. Irrespective of the crisis, the insurance company connects you to a network hospital for treatment. Travel insurance also covers luggage loss and delays.

Airlines may find your bags, but you still need clothes and toiletries before your belongings arrive.

Similarly, insurance protects you from travel mistakes like losing passports by meeting replacement costs.

The same applies to flight delays. Travel insurance covers extra costs like food and drinks as you wait for the next flight. Some policies even let you cancel your holiday and compensate you for 12-24-hour delays. The first travel insurance consideration is high coverage limits. That way, you don’t worry about high hospital bills when you need professional care.

Likewise, ensure the policy includes emergency evacuation separate from the medical cover. This guarantees your transport to the nearest medical facility when disaster strikes. Other travel mistakes include ignoring your home insurance provisions before acquiring travel insurance. Because some home policies cover personal belongings when you leave home, you can save money by refusing baggage cover.

Instead of struggling with mistakes like buying several single-trip policies per year, you can reduce costs with an annual cover. Remember to take photos of your bags to facilitate compensation in the event of mistakes like a loss. Note that travel insurance doesn’t cover some mistakes. The first one is drug-related mistakes. The insurance company won’t compensate you for mistakes made when intoxicated.

Travel insurance also exempts famous travel mistakes such as carelessness in handling possessions. That’s also the case for pre-existing conditions. For instance, the cover won’t buy insulin for diabetics. However, some insurers may accept to cover pre-existing diseases for higher premiums.

Other travel mistakes include overlooking age limits, seeing travel insurance covers particular age brackets. Remember, insurers classify scuba diving, mountain climbing, and jet skiing as risky activities. As such, making these travel mistakes could cost you your cover.

Bottom Line

Don’t be too hard on yourself for making mistakes. You get better at avoiding travel mistakes with each trip. What are your biggest travel mistakes? Share your lessons and how you overcame the travel mistakes in the comments.

by Sorin

Sorin is a freelance travel writer. He is an experienced travel writer and traveller. Since 2012 he explored more than 60 countries on 4 continents: Asia, Europe, Africa and North America. Currently is based in Romania after spending the last 7 years in Myanmar.